What were Hitler’s objectives in commencing Aktion T4? In other words, why on Earth did he make the decision to commit this mass murder (let’s call a spade a spade)? What were his intended results?
By all accounts, Adolf Hitler genuinely liked children (obviously, only Aryan children) and cared very much about their well-being. Especially young children. Consequently, there is little doubt that his decision to initiate the child euthanasia program was overwhelmingly driven by a sincere desire to put an end to the suffering of incurably sick (or irreparably damaged) children and their parents.
At the time, life for those children – whether at home or in institution – was genuinely hellish; therefore, euthanasia of children (with the obvious exception of “those unfit for society”) was, indeed, a genuine mercy killing. As it happens in such projects all the time, things quickly spiral out of centralized control which leads to totally and completely unjustified (and thus inexcusable) murders that Adolf Hitler never authorized.
Obviously, his sincere (and fundamentally legitimate) desire to keep his nation healthy and beautiful did influence his decision on euthanasia of children – as did a sincere desire to keep their parents, other relatives, medical personnel and social workers occupied with far more valuable activities (in terms of generating aggregate value – financial, functional, emotional and spiritual) for the German society.
Adolf Hitler never explicitly mentioned the Great Hunger of 1917-19 caused by the British naval blockade of Germany (possibly because the event was way too traumatic). There is little doubt, however, that these experiences became the foundation and the key driving force for his concept of Lebensraum – one of the key components of Nazi ideology and his foreign and military policies.
The same experiences made him firmly opposed to the idea of feeding the “useless mouth” – i.e., those who do not make a valuable contribution, never made a valuable contribution and will never make a valuable contribution to the German society. And there is little (if any) doubt that this opposition was a material contributing factor to his decision to commence Aktion T4.
Hitler’s reasons for ordering the euthanasia of adults were substantially simple and straightforward: they were totally useless individuals that the nation fighting an existential war simply could not afford to feed and take care of (which in reality was not the case).
Worse, in his view they were potential “spoilers of the German blood” capable of producing equally useless offspring that the nation could not afford to feed or take care of either. The statement “death is the most reliable form of sterilization” was not originally his (it was Reinhard Heydrich who first made it) but he would definitely subscribe to it wholeheartedly.